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Commuting Bicycle commuting is easier than you think, before you know it, you'll be hooked. Learn the tips, hints, equipment, safety requirements for safely riding your bike to work.

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Old 06-24-09, 04:45 PM   #1
johnwilson09
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Cheap commuter for the missus

I'm looking for a fairly cheap (bottom of the range) commuter for my girlfriend. She would like a hybrid for practicality on her rides to and from work, but not to spend much money. I'm in the UK so working in GBP.

Here are some examples I found after a quick search:
Raleigh Venture Ladies 2009: 150 ($250)
Raleigh Oakland 2009 Women's Hybrid Bike: 180 ($300).
Raleigh Pioneer Metro Ladies 2009: 213 ($350)

I couldn't find much apart from Raleigh at this price range. I saw some Falcons, but the frames looked pretty ugly.

I really don't know much about hybrids so if anyone has any pointers that would be great. I guess most of the frames at this price range will be equally bad? Is it worth trying to find particular components, e.g. 7-speed over 6-speed? EZfire vs Revoshift shifters? My mission is to find the best value for the low low price, I'm not expecting great quality but any advice on the lesser of the evils available would be much appreciated!
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Old 06-24-09, 04:57 PM   #2
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Have you budgeted for the other commuter needs: a lock, some type of bag/basket and rack combo to carry work clothes, lights, pump, etc?

I think if you are on a budget, that is the biggest thing to look at: total cost, including all the assorted bits and pieces. Have you thought of a used bike? You might find something vintage at better price that is of equal or better value than the lower end bikes.
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Old 06-24-09, 05:03 PM   #3
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If you want the GF to one day be your Mrs,. then get her something in carbon - and I'n NOT talking about a diamond!

Save practicality for kitchen appliances.
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Old 06-24-09, 05:20 PM   #4
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politicalgeek: We haven't included the cost of accessories, but that will probably be separately acquired to the bike.

dwr: Well I'm actually using her parents' money, and adding a little bit to it, but mostly just saving them the effort of looking for a bike. We're both students so carbon unfortunately is out of the question!
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Old 06-24-09, 05:40 PM   #5
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have you thought of a used bike? You might find something vintage at better price that is of equal or better value than the lower end bikes.
+1 and vintage can be quite cool.
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Old 06-24-09, 10:20 PM   #6
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I've had a Falcon bike many years ago and they were good. I would sit down and have a chat with the missus about what she wants to use the bike for, look at distance and how often she will use it. Bikes at 150 quid, are ok but they don't last if she is say cycling above 5miles a day in English weather. For a decent bike new you a looking at around 300.

Raleigh are a good if not particularly sexy brand, it all depends though if it's going to sit in the shed/garage or be used.

Talk to her, also do you ride or not?
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Old 06-29-09, 06:39 AM   #7
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Jonahhobbes: I ride a Bianchi road bike. I spent a lot more on that, when finances were slightly better! I'm interested in the second-hand route, but am worried I'd need a fair bit of knowledge about older frames and parts, which I don't have. She'll probably use the bike most days, but only a short run (<5 miles I think).
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Old 06-29-09, 08:39 AM   #8
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you want to get her a cheap bike, a reliable bike. get her a used bike. one word: craigslist.
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Old 06-29-09, 01:35 PM   #9
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you want to get her a cheap bike, a reliable bike. get her a used bike. one word: craigslist.
Ding ding ding...we have a winner. Craigslist has a UK version, depending on where you are that would be the place to look.
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Old 06-30-09, 12:59 PM   #10
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I don't see much difference between these 3 bikes. I was going to suggest an old 10-speed with straight bars. comfort bikes are slow.
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